in News Departments > Policy Watch
print the content item

Senior Obama administration officials have announced a number of steps that will help the West tap its clean energy potential and create green jobs. The efforts were announced during the annual meeting of the Western Governors' Association (WGA) in Park City, Utah.

The announcements include initiatives to advance the development of a smarter electric grid and more reliable transmission system, protect critical wildlife corridors and habitats, promote the development of renewable energy sources and lay the groundwork to integrate these energy sources onto the national electricity grid.

"These steps send an unmistakable message: The Obama administration will be a strong partner with the West on clean energy," says Energy Secretary Steven Chu. "We will create jobs, promote our energy independence and cut our carbon emissions by unlocking the enormous potential for renewable energy in the western United States."

The Department of Energy (DOE) announced $80 million in new funding under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) to support long-term, coordinated interconnection transmission planning across the country.

In addition, $50 million in ARRA funding will support state public utility commissions in regulating and overseeing new electricity projects, which can include smart-grid developments, renewable energy and energy efficiency programs, carbon capture and storage projects.

Administration officials also agreed to partner with the WGA to enhance state wildlife data systems that will help minimize the impact to wildlife corridors and key habitats when developing renewable energy projects.

The DOE and the WGA released a joint report by the Western Renewable Energy Zones initiative that takes first steps toward identifying areas in the Western transmission network that have the potential for large-scale development of renewable resources with low environmental impacts.

Participants in the project included renewable energy developers, tribal interests, utility planners, environmental groups and government policy-makers. Together, they developed new modeling tools and data to facilitate interstate collaboration in permitting new multi-state transmission lines.

For more information, visit westgov.org.

SOURCE: Department of Energy

IowaDeptEconDevel_id1863

Trachte Inc._id1770
Latest Top Stories

Bird Groups Target LEEDCo's Icebreaker Offshore Wind Pilot

Two bird conservation groups that helped halt a wind project earlier this year argue that Lake Erie Energy Development Corp.'s (LEEDCo) 18 MW offshore demo poses a major risk to regional wildlife.


Report Disputes U.S. Agency's Renewable Energy Projections

A new analysis from the Sun Day Campaign says renewables are slated to provide 16% of U.S. generating capacity by 2018 - over 20 years earlier than forecast by the Energy Information Administration.


Kansas Renewables Mandate Survives Yet Another Attack, But Is It Too Early To Celebrate?

Over the past three years, some legislators have tried to either weaken or repeal the state's renewable portfolio standard, which requires Kansas utilities to reach 20% renewables by 2020.


AWEA Highlights U.S. Wind Success Stories Of 2013

Despite a 92% drop in new capacity last year, the sector still has myriad reasons to celebrate, according to a new report from the American Wind Energy Association.


Feds List New Bird Species As Threatened - Should Wind Developers Be Worried?

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is designating the lesser prairie-chicken as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. An expert explains how this might affect the wind industry.

UEA_id1896
JLG_id1900
WomenofWind_id
Acciona_id1907
bonfiglioli_id1913
AWEA_id1886